Lyrical Alliance: Rowan University’s Premier Poetry Group

When you attend one of Lyrical Alliance’s open mics, poetry slams, workshops or even a general meeting, you witness the battle cry of one of Rowan University’s most diverse and talented groups.

-“Can I get an  L.A.? “

“L.A.!!”-

In the words of G-Eazy, “If you don’t know by now, then you should probably get familiar.”

Lyrical Alliance was chartered as a club in 2010 and has served ever since as a safe haven for all different kinds of poets, rappers, singers and musicians looking to master their craft. The group provides a welcoming atmosphere for anyone looking to let out transcribed emotion that’s been trapped within the confines of a piece of paper or the screen of a cellphone.

During the spring semester, members of L.A. have either hosted or taken part in many different endeavors, including: several open mics, speaking at the LEAP Academy Upper School in Camden, running workshops and performances for Rowan’s 2nd annual Tent State University, competing in CUPSI, and the annual Spring Poetry Slam. Events for the fall semester include featuring more poets from the Philly and New York area to come and speak at meetings to help and inspire members.

Footage of Lyrical Alliance’s March Open Mic (Parts  3, 4)

LA’s MC’s

“I think that poetry affect the rapper not simply in a poetic way, but in a more emotional way. Hip hop artist that witness more art that shows feelings, rather that materialism tend to show that in their work.”- Steve Zielinski, 21, Psychology Major from Robbinsville, NJ

Although I’m the furthest thing from a poet or rapper, this group has helped me acquire a new appreciation for spoken word poetry and the complexity behind it. The lyrical ability of the rappers in the group easily caught my attention through their use of intricate punch lines and metaphors (and metafives).

Many poets in the group moonlight as rappers, such as graduating seniors, Josh Howard and Joe Penn. Both of which are  23 years old, and are RTF majors with concentrations in other areas of study. Josh Howard, the current president of the club goes by ShakeSphere, while Joe, simply goes by J-Penn.

Scottt Sigl, a senior Music Education student, who is set to be club president for the fall semester, is actually a rapper turned poet. Originally, focusing most of his energy on rapping, but after joining the group, became more poetry oriented.

“I’m not 100% into rapping as I used to be, but that doesn’t mean I won’t still kick freestyle should the occasion arise.” Sigl competes in poetry slams all around the Philly area and was also a member of the CUPSI team.

One of the reason I was able to move forward with this blog was through my friendship with Richard Ennis, 20, a sophomore Psychology major from Wildwood, who I had met during the one first meeting of the semester. Ennis introduced me to the a lot of the underground SJ/Philly hip-hop scene, which in turn led me to concerts and other friendships along the way.  Despite being more a rapper than a poet, Trip, as he goes by in his music attributes the group for one of the reason for continuing his pastime.

“Lyrical Alliance inspired me to continue rapping because before I found them, I seriously considered quitting. I’m really proud to be part of such an awesome and talented group of students.”

His mixtape, “True Colors”, was released last week and features other members of L.A. It is a available for download here.

For more info on future events and plans check out:

Official Website, Facebook & Twitter

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